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Locals hit out at town centre drunks and drug users

Thursday May 12 2016

Peel Square Peel Square

LOCALS have hit out at drunks and drug users loitering around the town centre.

Karen Evans, who regularly shops in town, said she fears for her safety because of the often abusive nature of drinkers and drug abusers in Peel Square. 

She said: "I was in town today and it was the final straw. One of them urinated themselves then she bragged at the top of her voice about it.

"This is not what I want to see in our town. I even had to take a bodyguard today to do some banking as I don't like having money on me and having to move them out of the way to get in."

There have been calls on social media for a stronger police presence in the town centre to increase safety.

Following several incidents of anti-social behaviour last month, a spokesman for South Yorkshire Police and Barnsley Council said: “We are aware of the antisocial behaviour caused by some individuals in Peel Square and share the concerns that people may have about this issue.

“The Public Spaces Protection Order, enforced by the police and the council, is one solution which works towards tackling the behaviour in Peel Square.

“Uniformed officers and PCSOs continue to patrol the area along with council enforcement officers.

“A number of arrests have been made in recent days following some public order offences in Peel Square, and police continue to work together with Barnsley Council to identify people who are committing offences and causing antisocial behaviour.

“Peel Square remains an ongoing priority for us and will continue to do so."

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Reply Posted by H on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:21
there has been an increase of them they get moved along to other areas then other retailers suffer, the arcade has had a few of them recently st Patrick's day a man passed out again of the Athens stores shutter urinated him self then took some more drink from his cider bottle, more police needed and instead of moving them around town get rid of them

Reply Posted by Leonie on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:29
The town centre is an absolute disgrace with all drug users it makes me feel physically sick! never thought id be saying that im actually ashamed to live in Barnsley, its embarrassing!

Reply Posted by K on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:30
I posted over a year ago on WAB about the town centre being over run by these parasites and gangs of eastern europeans gathering outside bookies and the old dears of Barnsley being intimidated by this behaviour and you blocked me and ive been blocked ever since.
This is not something that as happened over night its been escalating for years and our useless labour council and SYP have done nothing. And to make matters worse the people who are moaning have most likely just gone and voted labour in yet again.

Reply Posted by fellow on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:37
K as got it spot on here. Vote Labour, vote a set of incompetent t@@@@@s

Reply Posted by R on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:32
There's not a lot the police can do , move em on yes , then whAt ....arrest them if they commit an offence , go to court maybe , an what?? These people no the law and courts like back of their hands ....in and out like clockwork !! Just be happy their not sat outside your homes!! I can't stand them , but I just go to town do what I need to do an go home!

Reply Posted by Observer on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:40
If you dont like our town people. Run along and live somewhere else.

Reply Posted by fellow on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:38
Why should we run along, why can't the problem be addressed instead of burying our heads in the sand. THEY should be the ones 'running along' - off the edge of a cliff!

Reply Posted by Louise on Thursday May 12 2016 at 15:45
Could not agree more Barnsley town centre is a disgrace. Poor yorkshire bank building is their usual hangout they are either blind drunk or drugged up. It's about time something is done.

Reply Posted by thegrim reaper on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:08
Thrash them i say

Reply Posted by Anon on Thursday May 12 2016 at 16:03
Observer, I don't think people are saying they don't like the town, more the drunks and druggies that frequent the town causing a nuisance, it's getting worse day by day and no not all the people that moan about this situation voted labour K, all we want is to shop safely without having to witness swearing, shouting, urinating and drinking on our streets. Agreed SYP don't do enough to combat them, moving them on does nothing but take the problem somewhere else, but when there's orders in place to prevent public drinking, swearing and littering maybe the police should take more of a direct approach

Reply Posted by Jonathan Lipnicki on Thursday May 12 2016 at 16:09
Should probably just cull them tbh.

Reply Posted by Bulldog on Thursday May 12 2016 at 16:18
I agree with some of the comments and that it is an ever increasing problem. I find it sad that in 2016 we as a society are allowing individuals to live like this. Some of these individuals probably one day had a respectable job and family life. Admittedly some fall into the habit at a young age and find it difficult to break. It is the ease in which individuals can get hold of such substances. Should we not be discussing how we can be helping these individuals instead of culling or getting rid of them. Admittedly some do not want the help but should we not be trying. I find it upsetting when I walk through the centre especially with my grandchildren and it is intimidating. I don't know just a thought.

Reply Posted by Steven James on Thursday May 12 2016 at 18:54
Yes we can help the smackrats by forcing em to go cold turkey for a couple of months instead of letting em roam about the town pestering good people for "busfare"!

Reply Posted by Mr C on Thursday May 12 2016 at 16:25
I would go move them on my self with a physical warning but I would get arrested

Reply Posted by Chrissy on Thursday May 12 2016 at 16:28
This is why i hardly go into town unless i have to and at that i have to force myself its awful.. I use to love walkin around town.. To many riff raff now puts Barnsley to shame

Reply Posted by Poz on Thursday May 12 2016 at 17:17
I know we don't have any police cells in Barnsley at the moment, the nearest lock up is Sheffield so why not arrest them for whatever crime they are committing giving them an hour in the cells n then letting them find their own way home, we may get a little peace, just for a while anyway

Reply Posted by meg on Thursday May 12 2016 at 17:28
There were three (drunk/drugged up )men sat outside on the floor outside William Hills last night having an argument/debate and three of us(women) had to walk past listening to the swearing and threats they made to each other, they are making peel square a worrying place to go at any time of the day, we were on our way to church and have to return to the bus station the same way, it is daunting and scary to walk past something needs to be done.

Reply Posted by Natasha on Thursday May 12 2016 at 19:29
Oh you poor helpless women, god forbid you have to hear someone SWEARING it must have been so traumatic

Reply Posted by Mr Reality Check on Friday May 13 2016 at 23:08
Swearing may be an acceptable form of communication for you "Natasha" but for many people it is not. It is seen in the eyes of the law as antisocial (Crime and Disorder Act 1998).

I try to avoid taking my children anywhere near the town center, which is a shame because all this mindset is fueling the downward spiral into hell for the town, because all you end up with is a concentration of low lives and anyone who aspires for more - moves.

Reply Posted by fellows on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:40
Wowsers, hope you are recovering from this horrific ordeal. I mean, swearing in front of the God Squad - how simply dare they!

Reply Posted by JC on Tuesday May 17 2016 at 19:06
'Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.'

Reply Posted by David Wood on Thursday May 12 2016 at 17:41
They have all the powers to deal with the situation, I can tell you some days it's like the wild west with streets closed due to fighting etc. I for the life of me understand BMBC spending millions on the regeneration whilst they allow what's happening to happen. Time that they treated the town like they treat the area around that big building they sit in.

Reply Posted by Only me on Thursday May 12 2016 at 18:07
I also agree with a lot of the comments about this. Yes it's intimidating, no we don't want to see people peeing themselves and hear them shouting and swearing but some of the people who hang around there have lost literally everything. One of them had his heart broken by the love of his life, lost his home, his faithful old doggy companion and he has no family. He slipped into absolute despair. Last time we saw him he was fitting on the floor outside Yorkshire bank, high on so called LEGAL HIGHS. So its not just the illegal drugs that are wrecking lives. I know these people have choices and it's up to them to follow the right path but it's not always easy when they have been so low and lost everything. Saying that I don't want my kids to have to walk through town and see these people so yes, something MUST be done about them.

Reply Posted by Hoss on Thursday May 12 2016 at 18:23
I truly believe that that the human race has peaked and is now quickly devolving.

Reply Posted by Andrea on Thursday May 12 2016 at 18:29
I very rarely use the town centre for this exact reason. I had to place a check in the bank today and the empty market stalls in peel square looked and sounded like a vagrant camp. It was very intimidating needs dealing with.

Reply Posted by Barnsley Lass on Thursday May 12 2016 at 18:48
It's daunting walking past all the dregs of society sometimes. Sat outside the bank either ****** or off their tits on drugs, making a nuisance of themselves day in day out. They need clearing out for good. I hate town now and avoid it as much as possible. What makes me mad though is that my 72 year old nannan is scared of walking near them, town used to be safe and now it's not. It's a **** hole and the scum bags makes the place worse!!

Reply Posted by B on Thursday May 12 2016 at 19:08
You can get a banning order for farting at the football.Surely they could come up with something similar to ban the deadbeats.

Reply Posted by tarn on Thursday May 12 2016 at 19:57
What's voting labour got to do with this?... It's Cameron and his cronies that have cut over 18000 officers since 2010!

Reply Posted by emmerdale on Thursday May 12 2016 at 20:17
You think it's bad now! Wait until the latest cuts by Cameron come in to substance misuse services!

Reply Posted by Lolly on Thursday May 12 2016 at 20:33
It was a lot better when they congregated in sparra park. Its beyond belief when you see the same behaviour from 8.00 in the morning till late at night and its seems to be the same people who are violating our town.

Reply Posted by Pj on Thursday May 12 2016 at 20:42
Just give them all contaminated drugs and alcohol and laugh as they drop like flies the town is a disgrace filled with £1 stores

Reply Posted by fellow on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:42
Like your style - ever thought of running for parliament? You'd get my vote!

Reply Posted by Anon on Tuesday May 17 2016 at 18:56
Pity you can't go back in a time machine, join the Nazis, then get what you deserve....
You sound like a dangerous psychopath, hope you never go out in public.

Reply Posted by M on Thursday May 12 2016 at 21:11
Last time I was in town I come out of the Halifax bank with my 4yo and he started histerically screaming. When I looked around a second time I saw why... a man was sat upright in the doorway across the street with a crotch full of vomit & a needle hanging out of his arm. I can laugh about it now, my son thought he was a zombie! He should never have had to witness that though. I avoid town now. If I have to go, I do it when the kids are at school with a panic alarm & very heavy bag!!

Reply Posted by Maxine Davies on Thursday May 12 2016 at 21:23
Born in Barnsley - Raley Street - grew up in Worsbrough. Have very fond memories and it makes me sad to think that it's come to this. I'm never ashamed to say I come from Barnsley because the Barnsley I knew was so different and its that time (50's and 60's) that I hold dear. So sorry for all the good folks living there now, you deserve better.

Reply Posted by AH on Thursday May 12 2016 at 21:29
There is no point spending money trying to improve Barnsley sights and facilities when these vermin are central to it all. Venturing into town on my days off work is turning into a mission in itself. Council & Police really need to realise its dragging down whats left of Barnsleys reputation. Which is not good considering it's already pretty low hanging.

Reply Posted by Rob on Thursday May 12 2016 at 21:33
Whats £ 1 shops got to do with this? People shouldn't be out drunk in town during the day, I've been a dad for 5 weeks and I don't particularly want him being around that whenever I'm in town

Reply Posted by anon on Thursday May 12 2016 at 22:08
More needs to be done. Its like a scene from "walking dead" sometimes around Peel St. Got to be affecting business' in town because i for one only go into town if i really need to, i know some other people feel the same. I think the council are really making big steps to improve our town centre with all the re-developement, but its all for nothing if people are afraid to use the town centre because of drunks and drug users.

Reply Posted by Kimberley Brown on Thursday May 12 2016 at 22:12
They all won't to get out off Barnsley town centre I don't feel safe walking around they make me sick and they all won't a bath and I don't like walking thow Barnsley

Reply Posted by Debz on Thursday May 12 2016 at 22:22
I've witnessed all the drug users waiting for their fix they congregate outside Holyrood Church in full view of the business across road, totally disgraceful, police have been informed on numerous occasions but never attended.

Reply Posted by Sam on Thursday May 12 2016 at 23:05
If a normal person behaved like that on a night out they'd be locked up, no messing. Yet these unsavouries do it on a daily basis, intimidating people when there are children and the elderly about, and nothing seems to be done about it!

Reply Posted by s on Friday May 13 2016 at 00:47
How come there allowed to get away with drinking in streets, swearing, anti-social behaviour and us folk who want yo go shopping in a great Town are being given a bad rep by these people, it's a joke what's happening to our police force

Reply Posted by worried on Friday May 13 2016 at 05:56
i work in retail in Barnsley , these people and i use that word loosely are affecting trade . soon nobody will want to come into Barnsley to shop or do business . Jobs will be lost, shops will close . Barnsley will become a ghost town.

Reply Posted by Mrs no on Friday May 13 2016 at 06:19
About half of people that post on hear are druggie s your self or ex druggies or drinkers nothing wrong with Barnsley it is wot it is if you don't like it go some were else no one is forcing you to shop in Barnsley town go to Sheffield see if that's any better

Reply Posted by Mrs no on Friday May 13 2016 at 06:23
Barnsley grassers. Barnsley Grasser

Reply Posted by K on Friday May 13 2016 at 06:45
I work in banking around this area. We have had cause to ring the police on numerous occasions. Their meeting point is in the doorway of GTNews that closed last August. It's filthy, food debris, cans, stained floor and stinks! The bench outside Yorkshire Bank is now the 'homeless' bench. Behind Greggs & The Lemon Tree is full of sleeping bags and carrier bags of stuff and the stench is horrendous! The banks around that area have all called the police on a regular basis, customers are afraid to use outside ATM machines preferring to come inside for safety. I have seen a guy 'dealing' in the street, 2 police officers were 10 feet away! It needs sorting it's gone on too long.

Reply Posted by Down Under on Friday May 13 2016 at 06:47
As a former resident and long standing tax payer I take issue with someone criticising the government for slashing substance misuse programmes. The vast majority of individuals who take drugs were fully aware of the long term consequences of taking drugs but did so anyway. Again, generalising, the vast majority wont be taxpayers. Therefore, as a taxpayer, I took the conscious decision NOT to take drugs and therefore do not depend on these programmes that I pay for anyway. The majority of drug users made their decisions to take drugs, they now have to live with the consequences of their actions and cannot really complain when the help isn't there for them !!

Reply Posted by J Boylin on Friday May 13 2016 at 07:18
Who gives a crap about their problems.! We all have problems from time to time..! It does not give them the right to have such behaviour in a public place. A minority causing so much upset to the vast majority. We as a community and majority should have the right to deal with it as we see fit. Without the worry of the law protecting them as it is so clearly failing us.

Reply Posted by N on Friday May 13 2016 at 07:55
I work in town Mon-Fri and am often in town Saturday morning to shop. I've seen people bragging about scoring drugs at 8.30am then they're still there passed out on a bench at 6pm. The amount of shouting and arguing they do is quite intimidating as is the coming up to you and asking for change for 'bus fare' (I wasn't born yesterday!). I'm also fed up of at least once a week seeing at least 1 police car, a response car and an ambulance there - what a waste of resources. There has been an extended police presence the past couple of weeks but I don't think they actually do anything and if I'm honest there seems to be more of them now than ever. I left work yesterday to see a group on the bench outside Yorkshire Bank blind drunk, arguing and one of them passed out with a can still in his hand. The police really need to do something about this because it's getting ridiculous.

Reply Posted by Val on Friday May 13 2016 at 08:08
All that will be done is move them on to some where else it needs more to be done

Reply Posted by Deb on Friday May 13 2016 at 08:26
Dun't go up that end if I can help it,it,s a disgrace.

Reply Posted by M Rushforth on Friday May 13 2016 at 08:56
Barnsley is becoming a slum town.Come on now Sir Steve Houghton come out of your ivory tower and do something about it.Stop taking pieces of silver from the government and say no to foreigners as other councils have done and look after your own.

Reply Posted by K on Friday May 13 2016 at 10:13
I too think barnsley town centre is a disgrace full of low lifes druggies and alcoholics i avoid town as much as possible unless i have my partner or a friend with me its not a safe place no more .

Reply Posted by Ped on Friday May 13 2016 at 10:48
It is a disgrace and a problem that wouldn't take much solving. So why no action?????

Reply Posted by Dave on Friday May 13 2016 at 14:53
Mucky dirty smack rats every one won't running over

Reply Posted by Sarah on Friday May 13 2016 at 15:23
Has anybody thought some might need help with alcohol while some might just be **** heads

Reply Posted by claire beaumont on Friday May 13 2016 at 16:06
I go into 2 town every Monday & Tuesday to do my volunteering at the RSPCA charity shop. Every time I go towards Perl square the drops outs and drugies make me unease and also scares me as they walked past me and am scared that they will try and take my bag from me x

Reply Posted by Liam on Friday May 13 2016 at 17:19
I just look at these comments and think wow....becoming drug dependent can happen to anyone, it only takes enough trauma or to get in with the wrong crowd. Yes, these people should be helped not scorned or shamed. Wagging the finger and shaming people doesn't really help...will more than likely cause them to rebel and become aggressive, maybe violent, and the aggressor who started the argument will stereotypically play the victim. With the Tories in control, food banks have risen more than ever...just look at the cuts to other services and rehab. What you don't know is that most clients in rehab actually get funding from a charity as majority of these services are privatised. Think before you blast other people's shortcomings...addiction my happen to you or even your relative!

Reply Posted by jamie shaw on Friday May 13 2016 at 21:56
I have got experience of the low life scumbags 1st hand.
my brother was bad on drugs and he more help and the more help he got the more he stole, we paid for an implant fitting £1000,s this cost, he tried burning it out . all the help and love he needed, but drugs were is no 1 in life, stole the kids piggy bank money, gold rings and anything that was not bolted down, these people don't WANT help , there are a menace to society , my brother is dead now and I can honestly say my family are now at ease, sounds heartless but he wasn,t living, he was just existing,

Reply Posted by Steven James on Sunday May 15 2016 at 14:29
Choice, its all about choice innit.

Reply Posted by anon on Friday May 13 2016 at 18:07
These filthy alco, druggie scumbags do not have the right to make any decent persons life or workplace a misery. Like some others said it was their choice to take drugs. We all have problems but decent folk find proper ways to sort them out. Id round em all up put em in a big van and take em on the moors. Who ever makes it back gets another chance simple. The rest can rot. They are killing our town. What will happen the first time somebody decks a druggie for abusing or scaring a child? I wouldnt hesitate if one came near my kids.

Reply Posted by T on Friday May 13 2016 at 18:48
This town is a disgrace, and we expect people to visit us and like it, We don't like it and we live here what chance have we got. Its disscusting the sooner I get away the better

Reply Posted by Betty on Friday May 13 2016 at 19:38
Reply about anon comment should be on jeremy kyle programme bet you fat and pathetic person

Reply Posted by Natalie on Friday May 13 2016 at 22:41
Not what our children should be seeing thinking that is the right way to grow up its a utter discrace these scum are allowed to intimidate normal working class people ive change my bank of 18 year as i was scared yo use yorkshire always outside it off there heads

Reply Posted by Gobzmacked on Friday May 13 2016 at 22:43
Would love to know how many of you who are making these ridiculous comments about killing druggies etc are 1, unemployed long term not even interested in getting a job and 2, take drugs on a weekend, smoke weed or whatever. Heirarchy of druggies, i have coke at weekend but im ok, just shoot those who take more and different drugs than me. And the highest percentage of people who services treat are alcohol users, working, professionals with mortgages and familys......but its easy to see the half dozen or so homeless people in town and think thats what everyone who needs treatment is like. It isnt, far from it. I despise anyone who looks down on anyone, who the hell do you think you are eh?? Its people like youre who want putting down and running over. Thinking your above everyone else. If people are knob heads theyre knob heads, but dont blame alcohol and drugs when you all drink or/and use drugs yourselves. 12 months time it will be even worse in town centre, cos money isnt there to help people, but i spose thats theyre fault too. Some right idiots about ya not wrong, but it aint those hanging about in town centre

Reply Posted by rebekkah morley on Saturday May 14 2016 at 04:52
@highhorse ur ryt m8 most ppl on ere ant a clue,none av fort abt y there on drugs,drink or wat situation there in fo them t do wat there doin..obviously they lost evrythin nowere t live any fam wat cares & who knows m8 maybe 1day tht cud b them outside bank or twn ring duin drink/drugs...ppl really need t stp been so judgemental look at there lives & thank god fo wat they do av coz they've gt alot mre than wat most of them druggies or drinkers av gt!! Maybe ur parasites wna live in there shoes fo a day & c if u cud live lyk most of em I BET U FXXXXXS COULDN'T...U REALLY NEED T STP CALLUNG THEM & LEAVE THEM BE..KARMA IS A BITCH & ONE DAY ITS U WATS GONNA B LIVIN IN THERE SHOES & THTS WAT I WILL CALL KARMA

Reply Posted by tim on Saturday May 14 2016 at 09:42
You need help with your English..

Reply Posted by Fred on Saturday May 14 2016 at 22:54
Whilst your sentiments are quite honourable, you grasp of the English language is deplorable. If you can't mange to post in English, something resembling it would be maybe get a better response.

Reply Posted by Linda Matthews on Saturday May 14 2016 at 12:30
I have stopped going into town, because of drunks and drug users, also homeless people with dogs begging. It just doesn't feel safe anymore, it feels like they are constantly watching you.

Reply Posted by Wendy on Saturday May 14 2016 at 12:33
Rebbekka Morly, its time you went back to school! You don't even spell your Christian name the correct way! That is Rebecca!! That's the proper spelling. Did any of you see the police presence in town yesterday?? I had a conversation with one constable, the bench at the bottom of Mkt Hill was the subject of discussion on Tuesday, its very likely it will be removed at some point. The police are very aware of our ( the general public) concern about the goings on in Peel Square. We all have choices in life, a few make the wrong one for whatever reason. The same could be said for the obese of this town who walk round with pasties, fish and chips ect! It's there personal choice. Who are we to judge?? There but for the grace of god go many!! Be thankful for what you have, and be glad you made the right choices. Temptation is a funny thing?

Reply Posted by Wendy on Sunday May 15 2016 at 09:26
O dear Fred! Sorry to offend you with my take on the English language! You are more likely to understand the rough text that previous posters have used?

Reply Posted by Fred on Sunday May 15 2016 at 11:55
Wendy my post was not aimed at you, sorry for the confusion it was aimed at Rebekkkkkah !

Reply Posted by Wendy on Sunday May 15 2016 at 12:40
Apology accepted Fred. And sorry for my comment to you.I also picked up on Rebkkkkkkas! post! She's not the only one though! Most leave a lot to be desired? They must not teach Queens English in schools these days?? Sorry, not schools, Academy's!!! Enough said!

Reply Posted by Liss on Monday May 16 2016 at 10:34
Wendy I agree with you about the ridiculous text language that these youngsters use. You're not perfect yourself though; you can actually spell Rebekah in that way, it's the oldest version from biblical times. Also it's Academies not Academy's ;)

Reply Posted by Me, Here, Now on Monday May 16 2016 at 11:15
Something permanent needs to be done about these people NOW. A few weeks ago (not for the first time) I witnessed four people openly dealing what seemed to be prescription drugs outside M&S on Market street. The rate was £18 for 9 tablets, and according to one of them "tasted like Tramadol but gets better once you've swallowed it" !!??!!??
This happened at 5.30pm on a Saturday, in broad daylight with people still about.
How can so few people who take everything from society and give nothing back make so many people`s lives in this town a misery?? Where the hell are the Police.
I`d be happy to pay extra tax if it meant each and every one of these losers took enough in one go to get rid of them permanently. Nobody forces needles into these people, nobody forces tablets down their throat - get shut and bring this town back to the decent and safe place it once was.

Reply Posted by thegrim reaper on Monday May 16 2016 at 13:08
They should be Thrashed good and hard says the reaper , the only punishment these pieces of flotsam understand .

Reply Posted by incognito on Monday May 16 2016 at 21:37
Listen to yourselves.you sad excuse for human beings.barnsley Is gods town.filled with loving caring people.you must be all imagining or hallucinating.there are no drunks or druggies in Barnsley.its people like you who are giving Barnsley a bad name.you are a disgrace to this wonderful town.

Reply Posted by Dave on Tuesday May 17 2016 at 09:03
All smack rats wonts putting down

Reply Posted by Tom on Friday May 20 2016 at 03:38
The attitudes shown by many on the internet, on here, on facebook and elsewhere, towards those who have problems with drink and drugs make me fear for the future.

Rather than trying to understand and address the root causes of people's addictions, there is widespread hate and intolerance, and calls for punishment and persecution.
The problems will only get worse when the aforementioned attitudes are common place. The root causes are ignored, and those with problems are stigmatised, they are dehumanised and further marginalised.

Is it any wonder people continue to drink and take drugs when a significant chunk of society shows outright contempt and disdain for them, such hate is worse than useless for those in need of help.

The collective maliciousness achieves nothing, it merely ensures that the problem will remain, and that we all suffer in the quest to persecute a disadvantaged minority.

Nearly all the public seating in the town centre has been removed, in order to inconvenience the most disadvantaged from sitting down in public. Yet this affects us all, especially pensioners. Instead of being a welcoming place to visit, with places to sit down and rest briefly, or congregate with others, we have created an inhospitable environment out of spite, and at significant cost, by removing the things we collectively benefit from, due to the vocal protests of imbeciles online.

Imbeciles who complain that poorer members of the public use public seating to sit down.

What next?

When/where will it end?

We live in a town that has lost it's soul, it's main industry, it's purpose. Deprivation in the form of widespread unemployment and poverty was the result, addiction flourished.

Some 30+ years on and we are yet to recover, material living standards have fallen for those at the bottom, a group whose ranks have swelled, and this during a period of time where productivity has more than doubled.
We could all be twice as well off as we were in the 1980s, but instead, many are no better off, many are worse off, and just a few are considerably better off, inequality being far greater than it ever was, with some being many hundreds of times better off than others, when previously they would have been only a few times better off.

Surely we should be trying to secure a better future, by replacing the industry which was the lifeblood of the town with new industries, in order to return to prosperity. And ensuring the prosperity is shared, so that a decent life is available to all, and will be for future generations.

Ask yourself, why don't young able bodied men, secure employment and decent housing, then proceed to raise a family, locally, in the numbers they did but a few decades ago? Why do we find within our town, former soldiers, engineers, scientists, architects, builders etc. on the dole, on the sick, in drink, on smack, wasting away, barely existing, on the way to an early grave?

What is the result?

The individual suffers and society suffers. The individual is often blamed, and this supposedly justifies his suffering, whilst society tries to deflect blame onto the individual. Society suffers regardless of blame, so it might as well accept it shares some blame, if it does not allow for individuals to flourish.

If an individual flourishes, he benefits, and so does his society. We all benefit.

When many individuals are unable to flourish and utilise their potential, they suffer, and their society does too. When the individuals wish to prosper but are unable to, due to lack of opportunity, it is not they who are at fault, and it is not they who should be blamed. It is society at fault.

When that society is more concerned with increasing the level of suffering out of spite, rather than addressing the poverty and lack of opportunity, the society shall not prosper.

We live in a society which is incapable of utilising the potential of many of it's members, and many members are without purpose, many are facing extreme poverty and destitution, addiction is rife, and progress is lacking. The society in response to it's own failures, actively persecutes it's members out of spite for the most marginalised, it cannot and shall not prosper if it continues to behave this way.

It is not just I that should fear for the future.